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Visa Application Information

Get a passport- Verify that there are no errors in your name, birthdate etc…

Receive your Form I-20 from your chosen school

Pay your I-901 fee at  Print out the confirmation of payment (receipt).


To Apply for an F-1 Visa*:

  • Find the U.S. Embassy or Consulate near you
  • Fill out the DS-160 and upload your visa photo.  Print out the confirmation page
  • Pay the fee
  • Schedule an interview appointment
  • Make sure you bring all required documents to the visa interview.
*Students holding Canadian passports are not required to apply for an F-1 visa prior to arrival in the U.S. But must have the following documents at the port of entry: 
  • Valid Canadian passport
  • The original Form I-20
  • Proof that the SEVIS fee has been paid
  • Proof of ability to pay school fees and living expenses in the United States
  • Proof of ties to Canada.

Tips for your interview:

The F-1 visa interview is very quick (1-2 minutes only).  We recommend you answer the questions you are asked and do not provide any additional information. Your I-20 states your major.  For IEC @ OCC students your I-20 states that you will be receiving intensive English language training. There may be a note about you starting an academic program in the future.  If the official asks what you want to major in after IEC, you may tell them.

The officer will be looking for any signs that you might want to remain in the USA after your study.  The F-1 visa is for temporary stay to study only, so if they doubt your intent they may deny your request for a visa.  Keeping your answers short and clear is best. Also, you want to make sure you are honest and that anything you say matches the information on your documents.

For further information you may visit an Education USA center near you.  You can locate one here: